Selfie-Editing App FaceApp Sparks Outrage With Introduction of ‘Blackface’ Filter
Controversial photo-editing app FaceApp has sparked outrage with the introduction of a new filter that allows people to change their ethnicity in their selfies.
The app, which launched in January, uses artificial intelligence to augment users’ facial expressions and make them look older or younger, or change their gender.
It clocked up one million downloads in its first week on Apple’s App Store, after launching on iOS in January. An Android version of the app was released in February.
However, in its latest update, the Russian company behind app introduced a range of filters that allowed people to change their faces to look more black, Asian, Indian or Caucasian.
The update prompted an astonished reaction from users of the app, with many taking to social media to share the distasteful effects of the new filters:
Responding to the backlash, Wireless Lab, the company behind FaceApp, has removed the filters and withdrawn the update from the App Store.
“The new filters have been removed,” said FaceApp’s CEO Yaroslav Goncharov in a press statement.
“The ethnicity change filters have been designed to be equal in all aspects. They don’t have any positive or negative connotations associated with them. They are even represented by the same icon.
“In addition to that, the list of those filters is shuffled for every photo, so each user sees them in a different order.”
This is not the first time FaceApp has been accused of racism.
Credit – Daily Mirror